Watford's Gerard Deulofeu out of Premier League opener against Brighton
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 09/08/18 7:48pm
Gerard Deulofeu will miss Watford's opening Premier League game against Brighton through injury.
The Spanish winger, whose loan move from Barcelona was made permanent during the summer, has been unable to train over the last few days due to an abdominal problem.
But midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure will play despite having only just recovered from appendicitis.
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"Gerard started to train with the team last week, but he had a little problem," said Hornets boss Javi Gracia.
"I think he will be ready in three, four or five days. Doucoure is fit and in a good condition to play. He's a player with great commitment, making a big effort every game."
Watford will also be without the injured Tom Cleverley and Nathaniel Chalobah, who is short of match fitness.
Despite Gracia being desperately short in central midfield, the 5pm transfer deadline passed without any news of reinforcements, though the club did sign winger Domingos Quina on a four-year deal from West Ham for an undisclosed fee.
Watford were considering a loan for West Brom's Jake Livermore but decided not to pursue the deal and Gracia must now make do with what he has.
"The centre of midfield, we have a problem with Cleverley, Chalobah and Doucoure as well and we only have one player in (Etienne) Capoue," he added.
"It's a position where we need to reinforce if possible. I don't sign players, it's the club who takes that decision. I can give my opinion and after that, I wait.
"I gave my opinion after last season finished and in the last weeks again, but they take the last decision.
"I'm just focused on the next game. I spend my time preparing for the next game more than thinking there will be movements or not in the window. I prefer to spend my time with the players we have.
"I have to be able to convince them they are the best, that they feel proud to feel and belong to this club and to put 100 per cent in every day. It's my job and I do my best."
The Hornets will also be without Stefano Okaka and summer signing Ben Wilmot, who has a minor knee problem.